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Ingham and Keynes on the nature of money

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  • Mark Hayes

Abstract

This paper compares and contrasts the thinking of Keynes and Geoffrey Ingham, focussing mainly on The General Theory and Ingham’s The Nature of Money (2004). Two points in particular are addressed: first, the relevance of Ingham’s insistence (following Keynes, among others) on the primacy of money of account to an understanding of Keynes’s own insistence that income is intrinsically monetary and upon the importance of the wage unit as an analytical tool; and second, the subtle contrast between Keynes and Ingham in their understandings of the source of interest as a genuinely monetary and not a ‘real’ phenomenon. Where Keynes identifies uncertainty as the source of interest within a methodologically individualistic framework of analysis, Ingham offers a sociological case in terms of the struggle between the debtor and creditor interests that inevitably emerge as a result of the creation of bank money under capitalism. Taking both points together, Ingham’s work not only underpins the crucial distinction between money and ‘real’ wages for the theory of employment but also develops Keynes’s recognition of the potential opposition between the interests of finance and industry.

Suggested Citation

  • Mark Hayes, 2012. "Ingham and Keynes on the nature of money," Working Papers PKWP1209, Post Keynesian Economics Study Group (PKSG).
  • Handle: RePEc:pke:wpaper:pkwp1209
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    File URL: http://www.postkeynesian.net/downloads/working-papers/PKWP1209.pdf
    File Function: First version, 2012
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Ingham, Geoffrey, 2004. "The nature of money," economic sociology_the european electronic newsletter, Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies, vol. 5(2), pages 18-28.
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    Cited by:

    1. Giuseppe Mastromatteo & Lorenzo Esposito, 2015. "The Two Approaches to Money: Debt, Central Banks, and Functional Finance," Economics Working Paper Archive wp_855, Levy Economics Institute.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    nature of money; nature of income; theory of interest;

    JEL classification:

    • B12 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - History of Economic Thought through 1925 - - - Classical (includes Adam Smith)
    • B31 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - History of Economic Thought: Individuals - - - Individuals
    • E01 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - General - - - Measurement and Data on National Income and Product Accounts and Wealth; Environmental Accounts
    • E42 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Monetary Sytsems; Standards; Regimes; Government and the Monetary System
    • E43 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Interest Rates: Determination, Term Structure, and Effects

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